Even though I agree with all those who say that dinner is not the best first date, if that’s your style, and if for one reason or another this is the best option for you in any given situation, the following six tips should be helpful in making the most out of your first date dinner:
1. Don’t Go Too Formal or Fancy
Some guys think that they need to impress a woman on a first date by inviting her to an extravagant restaurant. This is neither necessary nor desirable, regardless of your financial status. In fact, there are several significant reasons why having a fancy, overly formal dinner will likely be counterproductive to developing an intimate connection. Formal setting is not conducive to getting to know each other because of the stuffy surroundings, and the fact that you are likely to sit at a larger table and further away from each other a larger are and further away from each other. Further, instead of focusing on each other, you will probably be focusing on the food and the service way too much. The purpose of your first date is getting to know each other and not so much indulging in fine dining. Dinner dates at fine restaurants are better saved for the meaningful occasions between the people who already know each other and like/love each other, i.e. – birthdays, anniversaries, etc.
2. Lose Your Cellphone
Ideally, you want to appear like you just don’t have a cellphone when you are at a dinner table. There is no reason to check your phone (unless your partner has excused herself to the restroom) and there is no reason to keep it on the table as if you were on on-call (unless you are, in fact, on call). By being the kind of guy who gives his full and undivided attention to the woman, and who doesn’t allow anything or anyone to disturb his personal time with her, you will come across as someone who is control of his life and his time, and how knows how to enjoy his personal time without letting any outside sources downgrade it.
3. Don’t Eat Like You Just Came Back from a War Combat
Even if you are starving, don’t shovel food off the plate and don’t eat like you haven’t eaten in three days. If you have ever seen how unattractive it looks, you would know how important it is to avoid looking like hungry animal when you are on a date. If you tend to eat too fast or put way too much food at a time in your mouth, one way to prevent this is to have a light meal shortly before your dinner, so you are not that hungry when you go out on your dinner date.
4. Don’t Be Cheap or Petty
If you don’t feel comfortable with the prices of a particular restaurant, simply don’t suggest it and don’t go there. Your dinner date is not going to be enjoyable for you, if you are watching which items to order and preying that the woman goes easy on your wallet. Or, you will start resenting her for ordering too much food or going for the more expensive items on the menu.
Choose a restaurant where you would feel comfortable paying for the meal and leaving a reasonably generous tip. I once saw a guy pull out a calculator to figure out the tip. The girl that was out with him looked at me and rolled her eyes. You don’t want to be that guy with a calculator.
5. Don’t Be Disrespectful or Discourteous to the Staff
For some reason, some guys think that it makes them look more manly and more “alfa” if they treat a waiter as if he was their servant. It doesn’t. On the contrary – to women, not treating people who serve you with respect and not making their work experience pleasant is a sure douchebag sign, so don’t be a douchebag.
6. Don’t Get Stuck on Talking about Food The Entire Time
There is nothing wrong on commenting about the food and drinks that are being served during your dinner, but if what is in front of you on the table turns into the center of your entire conversation on your dinner date, it will likely make your interaction boring, stale, and superficial. Regardless of what you eat, your conversation should go beyond the food that you are having. Don’t be afraid to switch gears during your conversation and be random. Point at something or someone interesting at a restaurant. Ask her if she ever worked at a restaurant. Share a funny experience about you being a waiter or a server, and that could be a way to move on and talk about other, more interesting and more personal things that the food you are eating.